Better or Best?
“Better a patient man than a warrior, a man who controls his temper than one who takes a city” Proverbs 16:32.
Proverbs contains several scriptures stating one thing or situation is better than another. As I searched these out, the thought occurred to me. If there is a better, can there be a best? I think so.
Proverbs reminds us patience is important. A patient warrior, unlike a fool, doesn’t rush in where angels fear to tread. Keeping emotions and temper in check, he or she doesn’t act without a plan.
Proverbs 24:6 advises us, “for waging war you need guidance, and for victory many advisors.” The patient warrior recognizes the benefit of outside help. Armies create war councils to plan strategic maneuvers. High ranking officials meet and formulate a course of action. Jesus addressed this in Luke 14. He said smart kings count the cost before launching into battle. If the odds against victory are too high or the price too great, negotiating a peaceful settlement may be the best choice. Working through the process takes time and cool heads. It can be more advantageous to wait than react, rushing into a retaliatory strike. This is part of being a patient warrior. Know your enemy, pick your battles, some are not worth fighting.
If you think, “This is fine for soldiers and kings, but me, I’m just an ordinary person”, have another thought. If you’ve made Jesus your Lord and Savior, welcome to the army! Your rank is warrior/king. Paul mentioned our roles as soldiers to his young protégée Timothy. “Endure hardships with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus” 2 Timothy 2:3. Paul also exhorted believers to “put on the armor of light” Romans 13:2. This armor is described in Ephesians 6: the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the gospel of peace, the helmet of salvation, the shield of faith and the sword of the Spirit. Unconventional weaponry used in unconventional warfare; the armor provides protection during battles with demonic forces who are the instigators behind every conflict.
The patient warrior/king understands that supernatural entities are responsible for every attack. “Our struggle is not with flesh and blood” Ephesians 6:12. Really Paul, you don’t know so and so. No he doesn’t, but Paul faced enough opposition to know the key to victory is always fighting in the spirit realm and not necessarily on the natural level. The armor of God equips the warrior/king to hold ground in an assault. As believers we recognize both aspects of every battle. Here is where being a king comes in handy.
Revelation states, “hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and, we shall reign in the earth.” Our lordship is in effect now. The dominion originally given to and lost by Adam is now in the hands of its rightful owners, believers. It is our responsibility as kings to rule with this God given authority and as warriors to enforce it. The king as opposed to the warrior is a key element of the war council. Aided by honest, objective advisors, especially God Himself, kings weigh the options. While we never back down from satan, God may show us the battle is His not ours. When assessing the natural side of conflict, taking on a fight may or may not be prudent. Advisors see the situation with greater clarity, unhindered by emotions or pressures. With God, wise counselors and patience, warrior/kings avoid needless battles and casualties. When a response is required, unlike the soldier who knows only the commands, not the thought process behind them, the warrior/king understands the “method behind the madness”, so to speak. They’ve prayerfully examined every angle and confidently engage the enemy.
The patient warrior/king lives to fight and reign another day, avoiding unnecessary skirmishes. Equipped with a plan, approved by the King of Kings, he or she effectively advances and maintains the
’s progression thought out
the earth. This kingdom’s reign ushers in real peace individually and
corporately; establishes justice for all; removes sickness, disease, lack and
poverty; and even brings nature back into balance. Does that last statement
sound preposterous? The bible states, “the creation itself will be liberated from
its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of
God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of
childbirth right up to the present time” Romans 8:21-22. Now you know where weeds and stinging insects originated.
Jesus instructed his disciples to pray, “your
kingdom come, your will be done on earth
(emphasis mine) as it is in heaven” Matthew .
Our assignment is to bring the kingdom
of God back to earth. kingdom
With love as its foundation, the kingdom provides everyone all they need. God’s original charge to Adam to “replenish the earth” spreads out recreating the Garden of Eden as it moves forward. The end result, a transformed world, is a goal worth patiently fighting for.